Mayo Clinic Researchers Awarded Prizes in Neuroimaging at Alzheimer’s Association International Conference 2018


CHICAGO, July 21, 2018 — Two researchers from the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn., are the recipients of the de Leon Prizes in Neuroimaging presented at the Alzheimer’s Imaging Consortium, a pre-conference to the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference 2018 (AAIC 2018) in Chicago.

The awards are presented annually to a Senior Scientist and a New Investigator who each are judged to have published the “best paper” in their peer group in any peer-reviewed journal on the topic of advanced medical imaging to show diseases that affect or destroy the nerve cells in the brains of people with diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. The awards are named after Mony Leon, Ed.D., professor of psychiatry and director, Center for Brain Health at NYU Langone Health, and one of the founders of the Alzheimer’s Imaging Consortium and the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Awards.

The 2018 Senior Scientist de Leon Prize was awarded to Kejal Kantarci, M.D., M.S., a consultant and professor of radiology at the division of neuroradiology at Mayo Clinic. The paper for which she is recognized, “White-matter integrity on DTI and the pathologic staging of Alzheimer’s disease,” was published in Neurobiology of Aging in August 2017.

Dr. Kantarci is also the director of the neuroimaging core of the Mayo Clinic Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center. Her research focuses on using the advanced brain imaging technology for early diagnosis of dementia in her patients. Currently, Dr. Kantarci is leading an NIH-funded multi-center program on determining the long term effects of early menopausal hormone therapy on Alzheimer’s disease risk. She is also leading the NIH-funded Mayo Clinic Consortium on Longitudinal Imaging Biomarkers of Dementia with Lewy Bodies.

The 2018 New Investigator de Leon Prize is awarded to David T. Jones, M.D., a senior associate consultant in the department of neurology at Mayo Clinic and an associate professor of neurology and radiology at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science. His award-winning paper, “Tau, amyloid, and cascading network failure across the Alzheimer’s disease spectrum,” was published by the journal, Cortex, in December 2017.

Dr. Jones’ clinical interests are in cognitive and behavioral neurology. His research focuses on developing methods to derive measurements of brain connectivity and to evaluate their potential as biomarkers in healthy aging and diseases like Alzheimer’s and other dementias. Jones studies brain networks by the mapping regions of the brain to show how information is exchanged and how that differs in people with Alzheimer’s disease. He’s also studying the effects of how certain treatments may affect those brain networks.

The Alzheimer’s Association is committed to accelerating the global effort to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease and to recognizing the efforts of researchers who further our understanding about this devastating disease. As the worldwide nonprofit leader in funding Alzheimer’s research, we continue to directly fund cutting-edge research with approximately $160 million accelerating advances in 21 countries around the world.

The Alzheimer’s Association International Conference® (AAIC®)
The Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) is the world’s largest gathering of researchers from around the world focused on Alzheimer’s and other dementias. As a part of the Alzheimer’s Association’s research program, AAIC serves as a catalyst for generating new knowledge about dementia and fostering a vital, collegial research community.
AAIC 2018 home page:
AAIC 2018 newsroom:

About the Alzheimer's Association®
The Alzheimer’s Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research. Our mission is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research, to provide and enhance care and support for all affected, and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer’s. Visit or call 800.272.3900.


Media Contacts: 
Alzheimer’s Association AAIC Press Office, 312-949-8710,
Jann Ingmire, Alzheimer's Association, 312-335-5704,

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